Knowing as they do that they do not have the numbers to block Amy Coney Barrett’s confirmation to the Supreme Court, Senate Democrats are reportedly devising a plan to use as many procedural tactics as they can to at least delay the inevitable.
According to a new story in Politico, Democrats are mulling the use of tactics that will allow them to limit each day’s Senate Judiciary Committee hearings to two hours or less, making it difficult for the GOP to push Barrett to the Supreme Court before the election in early November.
If Democrats choose to exercise their power as the minority, it will leave Mitch McConnell and Senate Republicans with a couple of ways forward: They can either allow Democrats to string out the hearings and accept the fact that Barrett won’t be on the court before the end of October…or they can do away with the protracted hearings altogether, push Barrett’s nomination to the Senate floor for an up-or-down vote, and just get the whole thing over with.
Reports have it that Democrats hope to entice Republicans into going with this second plan, which will at least take some vulnerable senators off the campaign trail.
However, it appears that Republicans are considering another plan of attack. Instead of just going along with the Democratic Party’s shenanigans, they will answer their use of procedural chicanery with a bit of their own. This week, several senators warned that if Chuck Schumer’s cartel tries to play games with Barrett’s hearings, they will simply use the time in between to confirm as many lower court nominations as they can.
“We’re prepared for that if they decide they want to use motions to adjourn or try and use the tools at their disposal to keep us here, that’s fine,” Sen. Jon Thune (R-ND) said Tuesday. “But that keeps them here too and what that means is we’ll do more judges and more executive nominations that those guys don’t like.”
Republicans have to be ready to take a scorched-earth approach here, because Democrats have made it abundantly clear that they oppose this nomination both specifically – Barrett – and generally – they don’t believe Trump has the “right” to nominate anyone this close to the election. Since Democrats have staked out this no-compromise position, the only choice now is to go full steam ahead and crush the opposition.
We’re all for it. Mitch, get it done.